sabthebookeater

I sniff books like crack.
Delirium  - Lauren Oliver This can also be seen on sabthebookeater.blogspot.comFun facts before you read my review:1) I didn't know it had a large readership.2) I actually bought a hardbound copy of this book.3) It took me three tries in a span of 13 months before I actually finished it.I actually like the idea Lauren Oliver had for Delirium: Love's a disease and there's a cure for it. Not to sound emo but I think it's a great concept. However I think Oliver had trouble with the execution. It took me three weeks to finish the book the third time I read it because the first part of the book was a bit dragging. It only got interesting for me halfway through the book, and it still wasn't engaging enough for me to finish it faster. The SettingPersonally I think dystopia-themed novels, such as The Hunger Games and 1984, are always interesting to read. Unfortunately Delirium fell short in terms of creating a solid picture of the world the protagonist, Lena, lives in. Don't get me wrong, I get the general idea: love's a curable disease, the city's closed off, you get evaluated and paired off to a suitable partner in order to promote balance in society yada yada yada. Problem was, Oliver failed to make a big deal out of the twisted system the US was operating; there wasn't a higher sense of urgency. And because of that the setting became too soft for me. Almost like I didn't feel that the problem needed to be solved anyway, like the system's working and Lena's just being irrational. Another reason why the setup didn't do it for me was the lack of a concrete antagonist. In my opinion, there always has to be an antagonist very much present in dystopian literature. In Delirium, it's clear that the government is behind it all however there's no one person embodying the system.The CharactersThe Lena and Hana friendship is a bit cliché for me. The way they're different, Hana being the perfect one and Lena being the plain one, has been used too much in YA novels. I get that Lena had to be portrayed as ordinary so falling in love will create an impact on her self-esteem but using the cliché friendship to establish that didn't really click for me. Also I can't quite understand what made Alex fall in love with Lena. I know some love stories are purposefully written that way but I'm the type of reader who wants and has to see what made A fall in love with B. Individually though I appreciate the balance of characters in the book - nobody was too good to be true. I like that Lena was believably ordinary. I like that Carol's neither overbearing nor lax to the point of being irrelevant. I like how cool Alex is but not too cool as if he's the author's real life frustration. I like Hana's enthusiasm in trying out "illegal" things like listening to unapproved music or going to secret raves. Although come to think of it, Hana behaves like she's infected but it's clear that she doesn't have a love interest..... or does she. Heh.Individually, characters are okay. But overall? I didn't connect with them.The ConflictNow I get why the biggest (the way I saw it) conflict was placed towards the end of the book - in preparation for Pandemonium (the sequel). However in dystopian novels I feel that the main conflict should be the dystopia itself which, like I said, wasn't made into such a big deal. To me, the story lacked grounding because of this hence the conflict didn't add much to my enjoyment. Conflicts suck, essentially, but they have to be there in order for the reader to really get into the story.The WritingI always criticize a writer's style/technique because it's one of the biggest things I easily notice whether it's good or bad. I didn't like the way Delirium was written. Some parts were too dragging because of the long (descriptive) paragraphs that weren't even that helpful to the story. And I don't know if it's just my lack of imagination or the descriptions weren't that good but some parts of the town and of the Wilds were hard to picture. OverallIn conclusion, I thought Delirium was okay. It didn't give me the hangover effect but it has merits. I love how it ended though (and I'm not about to spoil it for everyone) so I'm not sure if I'll read the 2nd book, Pandemonium. It might ruin the series or book for me.

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